Jul 262017
 

Interactive, Inviting,  and Informative

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Source: Gift from Brother

This attractive coffee-table sized biography has long caught my eye for many reasons. One, being the superb and striking color of the cover (I love purple!), Secondly, because it is by Janet Todd, who is well-known for her many scholarly works on Jane Austen and other female authors. And finally, because it comes with removable memorabilia! In recognition of the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s passing this month, I thought reading about Jane Austen, her life, her times…and her novels would be a most apropos way to remember and commemorate her. 😉 Continue reading »

Jan 062017
 

Satire and Sentiment

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Source: Purchased

This is my fourth year spending my Christmas break reading an annotated edition of a Jane Austen novel, and as always, it is a wonderful, rewarding, and fulfilling experience! I’ve been alternating between the annotated editions by Harvard University Press and the annotated series by David Shapard. This year it was Mr. Shapard’s turn!

With all my reviews of annotated editions, my rating and comments reflect the annotations and observations made by the editors and not Jane Austen’s magnificent and beloved masterpieces. However, if you are interested, I did post a review of Northanger Abbey some years ago!)

Here are some of the insights and understandings I learned while reading David Shapard’s annotations: Continue reading »

Mar 022016
 

The Chronicles of Downton AbbeyAs Informative As It Is Elegant

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Source: Gift from Mom 🙂

As a Downton Abbey addict, I love the idea of a companion novel that combines the spirit and stunning visuals of the program with interesting history and facts about these characters and the time period they lived in. A few years ago I read and thoroughly enjoyed The World of Downton Abbey by Jessica Fellowes and I’m so delighted to see that she has followed up that first companion novel with three more!!

As a person who loves character-driven stories, analyzing personalities, and studying character development I was so pleased to see this edition focuses more on the characters of Downton Abbey. Divided into sixteen chapters, this book highlights nineteen characters that viewers encounter during seasons 1-3, the final chapter is a bonus Behind the Scenes chapter! Besides dozens of glossy images, these chapters provide insight and background for each major character in the series. Readers learn more about their motivations, behaviors, responsibilities, and limitations. Continue reading »